May Bank Holiday 2021: When will my benefits, Universal Credit or state pension be paid?

May Bank Holiday 2021: When will my benefits, Universal Credit or state pension be paid?


BENEFIT payment dates are often affected by bank holidays throughout the year. 

The month of May brings not just one but two extra days off for many workers in the form of bank holidays. 

The first May bank holiday falls on Monday, May 3 this year, while the second falls on Monday, May 31. 

Both Mondays will therefore not be working days for plenty of workers so the processing of payments will not take place as normal. 

This means some benefit claimants will get their cash on dates they may not expect.

The national holidays will also affect Jobcentre opening times.

Both branches and phone lines will be closed on Monday, May 3 with a full normal service resuming on Tuesday, May 4.

They will also be closed on Monday, May 31 before opening as normal again from Tuesday, June 1.

Here's everything you need to know about how the extra days off will affect your benefit payments:

When will my benefits be paid over the first May bank holiday?

The Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) has confirmed that tax credit payment dates will change over the early May bank holiday.

Households who would expect to be paid tax credits on Monday, May 3, will instead be paid on the last working day before the bank holiday.

How to contact the DWP for help

WHAT number you call depends on what type of benefit you need help with.

Universal Credit:

  • Call for free: 0800 328 9344
  • Welsh speaking: 0800 012 1888
  • Those with hearing problems can textphone on: 0800 328 1344

Lines are open from 8am until 6pm, Monday to Friday excluding bank holidays.

Child benefit:

  • Call for free: 0300 200 3100
  • Outside UK: +44 161 210 3086

You'll need your National Insurance number or child benefit number with you when you call.

Lines are open Monday to Friday from 8am until 8pm and on Saturdays from 8am until 4pm.

Tax credits: 

  • Call HMRC for free: 0345 300 3900
  • From outside the UK: +44 2890 538 192

Lines open from 8am until 6pm Monday to Friday and 8am until 4pm on Saturday.

The helpline isn't open on bank holidays.

Other benefits:

  • Call for free: 0800 328 9344
  • Welsh speaking: 0800 328 1744
  • Textphone: 0800 169 0314

Lines open 8am until 6pm Monday to Friday excluding bank holidays.

This means the payments will arrive in people's bank accounts on Friday, April 30.

The same applies to Universal Credit, which is paid to people on the same day every month.

If your UC payment date usually falls on the 3rd of the month, you will be paid earlier due to it falling on the bank holiday Monday.

So instead of receiving your money on Monday, May 3, you will be paid on Friday, April 30 this year.

All other benefit payments like PIP and ESA as well as state pension payments are also expected to follow the same changes.

When will my benefits be paid over the second May bank holiday?

The same applies with the second May bank holiday on May 31. 

The DWP has confirmed that tax credits will be paid on the last working day before the bank holiday – Friday, May 28.

What to do if you have problems claiming Universal Credit

IF you’re experiencing trouble applying for your Universal Credit, or the payments just don’t cover costs, here are your options:

  • Apply for an advance – Claimants are able to get some cash within five days rather than waiting weeks for their first payment. But it's a loan which means the repayments will be automatically deducted from your future Universal Credit payout.
  • Alternative Payment Arrangements – If you're falling behind on rent, you or your landlord may be able to apply for an APA which will get your payment sent directly to your landlord. You might also be able to change your payments to get them more frequently, or you can split the payments if you're part of a couple.
  • Budgeting Advance – You may be able to get help from the Government for emergency household costs of up to £348 if you're single, £464 if you're part of a couple or £812 if you have children. These are only in cases like your cooker breaking down or for help getting a job. You'll have to repay the advance through your regular Universal Credit payments. You'll still have to repay the loan, even if you stop claiming for Universal Credit.
  • Cut your Council Tax – You might be able to get a discount on your Council Tax by applying for a Council Tax Reduction. Alternatively, you might be entitled to Discretionary Housing Payments to help cover your rent.
  • Foodbanks – If you're really hard up and struggling to buy food and toiletries, you can find your local foodbank who will provide you with help for free. You can find your nearest one on the Trussell Trust website.

The same will apply to Universal Credit payments this weekend too.

If your monthly UC payment would usually land on May 31, then you will receive the payout on Friday, May 28.

Again, state pension payments and all other benefit payments like PIP and ESA will likely follow the same changes.

Will the amount I'm paid change?

You will receive the same amount of benefits that you normally do, even if you're paid early.

The DWP says that you don't need to do anything in order to be paid early.

Remember though, being paid earlier than normal means that you'll need to make it stretch an extra day the following month.

Make sure you take this into account when working out your household budgets.

What if my payment is delayed this bank holiday?

If your payment is not paid on time, then you should double-check the date on your award notice and contact your bank before calling HMRC.

If something's not right, you can also submit a complaint to the DWP.

What other bank holidays could affect my benefit payments?

There are a number of bank holidays throughout the year, with the next one being in August.

These could also affect when benefit payments arrive.

Here is a list of the rest for 2021:

  • July 12
  • August 2
  • August 30
  • December 25
  • December 27
  • December 28

More than half a million people who receive Universal Credit or other benefits have had their payments slashed in a tax raid.

Meanwhile, Brits on Universal Credit can now get paid for up to 16 weeks while they re-train.

Workers on Universal Credit urged to check payslips or they could risk losing benefits this month.

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